Ohio State Bounces Illinois, EIU Sets School Records


Published on November 18 2013 6:40 am
Last Updated on November 18 2013 7:20 am
Written by Millie Lange

College Football Roundup

Local college football squads were in action on Saturday. Ohio State stayed undefeated with a 60-35 win against Illinois at Memorial Stadium on Saturday.  The Buckeyes ran for 441 yards, 246 from Carlos Hyde and 184 from Braxton Miller. Hyde had four touchdowns and Miller threw for two and ran for one  OSU is 10-and-0 overall and 6-0 in the Big Ten. Illinois is 3-7 overall and winless in the Big Ten. The Fighting Illini are at Purdue Saturday.

Northwestern dropped a 27-19 decision to Michigan in triple-overtime. Notre Dame had the weekend off and hosts BYU this Saturday.


Eastern Illinois Smashes School Records In Win

CHARLESTON, Ill. – Eastern Illinois smashed two school records on Senior Day as they ran over No. 22 Jacksonville State, 52-14, to secure the No. 2 ranked Panthers second straight Ohio Valley Conference Championship and the league’s automatic FCS playoff bid.

EIU improved to 10-1 overall, 7-0 in the OVC.  JSU fell to 8-3, 4-3 in the OVC.  This marks the fourth time in school history that EIU has won ten games in the regular season.  The last time EIU won ten games in a regular season was 1995.  EIU also won ten games in 1986 and 1982.  EIU will try to win eleven regular season games for the first time in school history next Saturday in the final regular season game at UT Martin.


EIU's Little Garners OVC Awards

BRENTWOOD, Tenn. – Eastern Illinois sophomore running back Shepard Little won a pair of Ohio Valley Conference Weekly Awards after helping guide the Panthers to a 52-14 win over Jacksonville State and the 2013 OVC Championship.  Little was named the OVC Offensive Player and Newcomer of the Week.

Little rushed for 245 yards on the ground as part of a school record setting 413 yard team rushing day against the Gamecocks.  Little’s personal total of 245 ranks fifth best on the EIU single game list.  The running back from Schaumburg, Ill., was part of the Panthers first four touchdowns as EIU jumped out to a 35-0 first quarter lead, the 35 points are the most in a quarter by an EIU football team in program history.  Little scored on a 3-yard run on EIU’s first drive.  He then caught a touchdown pass from Jimmy Garoppolo, scored on a 37-yard run and threw a ten yard touchdown pass to Garoppolo.  He became the first OVC player to run, pass and catch a touchdown pass in a game since Murray State’s Casey Brockman in 2011.  Little went over the 1,000 yard mark for the season becoming the 11th individual running back in school history to pass the 1,000 yard mark for a season.

Little now leads the OVC in rushing and is 15th in the nation in rushing yards per game.  He is seventh nationally in all-purpose yards.

The Panthers, ranked No. 2 in the nation, return to action on Saturday in the final regular season game at UT Martin.  EIU is looking to become the first undefeated OVC team since 2007 when Eastern Kentucky was 8-0 in the league action.  EIU has been undefeated on two occasions in 2005 (8-0) an

“I’m really proud of this team,” said EIU head coach Dino Babers who has won back-to-back OVC Championships in his first two years in Charleston.  “To be able to win two OVC Championships in back-to-back seasons and win both of them at home on Senior Day; that is a testament to the seniors on this team.”

On day with winds blowing out of the South in the 25-35 mph range, EIU had the wind to their backs in the first quarter and capitalized scoring a school record 35 points in the opening quarter.  Shepard Little began what would be a career day for the sophomore by scoring on a 3-yard run at 13:48.  EIU gained the ball after recovering a fumble in JSU territory on the third play of the game.

Little pushed the lead to 14-0 at 8:32 with an 18-yard pass reception from Jimmy Garoppolo.  He scored again on a 37-yard run at the 5:58 mark of the first quarter to stake EIU to a 21-0 lead.

Little then added a touchdown pass with 3:22 left to play in the quarter hitting Garoppolo on a 10-yard pass.  Little became the first OVC player since Murray State’s Casey Brockman in 2011 (Nov. 19 vs. Austin Peay) to run, pass and catch a touchdown in a game.  EIU broke the school record with 46 seconds left in the quarter when Jimmy Lera scored on a 57-yard run.  The Panthers had called time out twice in the quarter to force JSU to punt into the strong wind.

The 35 points in the quarter breaks the previous EIU mark of 30 set on two different occasions – vs. Kentucky State on Nov. 13, 1982 and vs. Central State on Sept. 26, 1981.